Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) plans to form an international coalition to ensure that the European Union’s Product Footprint Scheme does not harm the current demand for plant and animal fiber clothing.
Under its Sustainable Products initiative, the EU proposes to draft legislation aimed at selling more sustainable products but the International Wool Textile Organization believes the EU’s current labeling laws, by not rewarding the attributes of natural raw materials nor penalizing key environmental impacts of fossil fuel-based raw materials, will lead to falling demand for wool and cotton.
Angus Ireland, Program Manager-Fiber Advocacy & Eco-Credentials, AWI, said, EU’s intention is to inform consumers about eco-friendly purchases to benefit the planet; however, AWI and the IWTO believe consumers will be misled and that their purchases of synthetic clothing are bad for the planet.
Australian Wool Innovation and the IWTO are coordinating closely on the Sustainable Products Initiative and are planning a much broader collaboration involving more than the wool and cotton industries.
AWI is also working the Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade team in Brussels to maximise its impact, and is coordinating with other Australian RDCs to influence PEF methodology.